Christian Living

Spiritual Life

A Listening Ear, an Obeying Heart

mother having a serious talk with her young son
Author Biography

    Jennifer's been praying and encouraging people through her seven-plus years of service in CBN's prayer center. She's also a professional life coach who enjoys reading, writing, and her relationships with her grown children. 

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Jennifer Scribner - Partner Development Specialist

Being the mother of two children, I can attest to the fact that when my kids were younger, they would often ignore my request to “not” do this or that. That can really become irritating after a while. One of my most-used catchphrases was, “How many times have you been told?”  

This was more common with my son than with my daughter. No matter how many times he got in trouble and how well he knew better, he simply didn’t want to listen. Both of my children complained (although I think that happens with most kids) when it was time to do household chores. If they didn’t complete a chore correctly the first time, they had to do it again. Despite my best efforts, my son still seemed to have trouble finishing chores without having to do them repeatedly, which was frustrating for both of us—especially for him, because he couldn’t play outside until his work was finished. 

He once took off one of his flip-flops and held them out the car window while I was driving. He wanted to see it flap around in the wind. I warned him that he would lose it if he kept holding it out there. But he disregarded my advice and sure enough, it blew away, teaching him a valuable lesson that day. Though he has grown into an amazing young man now, on occasion he still likes to push my buttons! 

During these and other challenging parenting situations, I often reflect on my own obedience to God. My heavenly Father patiently allows me to try my own way of doing things even though I’m well old enough to know better. Why do I still disregard His instruction?  

There is much more we would like to say about this; but it is difficult to explain, especially since you are spiritually dull and don’t seem to listen. (Hebrews 5:11 NLT)

The lessons I take away from this verse are (1) I don’t always pay attention to what the Lord is teaching me, (2) I am sometimes disobedient even though I know better, and (3) I only make things more challenging for myself in the long run.

So, I continue to ask for God’s patience and forgiveness. He alone gives us the ability to listen and understand—and the wisdom to obey.


Scripture is quoted from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

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